Zoning Chairman Danny Solis (25) and Finance Chairman Ed Burke (14) were two of the biggest fundraisers on the City Council last month, each reporting over a $100,000 to the various campaign funds they oversee. We also noticed an uptick in fundraising in the 43rd Ward soon after Lucy Moog announced her bid for the Ward’s Democratic Committeeman position currently held by Ald. Michele Smith(43). We detail those contributions and more in our September contribution report.

Large Transactions

The $53,900 transfer from the Laborers’ Political League Education Fund to House Speaker Mike Madigan’s 13th Ward Democratic Ward Organizationrepresents the largest infusion of cash to any aldermanic, city official, or ward organization for September. The 13th Ward Org also received a $25,000 transfer from UA Political Education Committee, a group representing plumbers and pipefitters.

Coming in close was the $18,210 contribution from the Chicago Teacher’s Union to Ald. Susan Sadlowski Garza’s (9) candidate committee, Friends of Susan Sadlowski Garza, on September 24th. The day after reporting the contribution, Ald. Garza reported returning the funds because the amount exceeded the legal maximum allowed.

The third largest contribution was a transfer of funds between two aldermen. On September 23rd, Ald. Danny Solis (25) loaned $15,000 from his candidate committee to Ald. Joe Moreno (1). Earlier this summer, Ald. Moreno transferred$10,000 from his candidate committee to Solis.

Ald. Roberto Maldonado (26) received $10,000 from contemporary home building firm Dream Develops of Chicago, Inc. on September 17th. The firm doesn’t have any current or future developments in Ald. Maldonado’s ward, which encompases Humbolt Park, but donated to him in January of 2015 and August of 2014.

The Progressive Caucus’ political action committee also raked in big bucks in September, garnering $10,000 from AFSCME and $1,500 from SEIU Illinois a week later. That brings total donations from SEIU to date up to $64,000.  

Biggest Fundraisers

Finance Chairman Ed Burke (14) continues to surpass his peers when it comes to fundraising. He reported $55,500 in donations to his personal campaign committee, Friends of Edward M Burke, $37,530 in contributions to his political action committee, The Burnham Committee, and $19,500 to the his ward organization, 14th Ward Regular Democratic Org. That’s a grand total of $112,530 for September.

Three employees of Unison Consulting, Inc., an aviation consulting firm that provides finance services for the O’Hare Modernization Program, donated to Ald. Burke’s personal campaign fund on September 3rd. Unison Consultants Yovette L. Drake and Gregory V. Chappell each donated $1,500, while Anthony Drake gave $2,000.

Burke, one of the few aldermen who didn’t sign on to a resolution calling for a moratorium on new charter schools, also got a $1,000 donation from INCS Action PAC (The Illinois Network of Charter Schools).

Zoning Chairman Danny Solis (25) reported more than 50 donations totaling $125,700 to the 25th Ward Regular Democratic Organization, which he oversees as ward committeeman. That’s compared to the $16,300 from a handful of donations made to his personal campaign fund, Citizens for Danny Solis.

Three individual contributions to the 25th Ward organization came from employees with Vivify Construction, a property management company based out of Melrose Park, IL. Vivify is an affiliate of Michigan Avenue Real Estate Group, the developer behind the two luxury apartments currently being constructed in the West Loop. The Jackson Throop Place and Madison Throop Place developments are a pair of adjacent loft-style, luxury apartment buildings. Milica Jovanovic, an accountant with Vivify, donated $5,000; Brian Loftin, a builder for Vivify, donated $5,000, and Stephen Muhn, a Project Executive with Vivify, donated $5,000. Another cluster of contributions came from two contractors with Astro InsulationJames Fox ($1,000) and John Stack ($1,000). Bridgeport-based Pacific Mall LLC also made a $5,400 contribution to the 25th Ward Organization.

The 43rd Ward Democratic Ward Organization, operated by 43rd Ward Committeeman and alderman Michele Smith, was a another big fundraiser, reporting $33,688 in contributions. Steve Fifield of Fifield Construction donated $5,000, so did Universal Security Corp, which has handled security at President Obama’s campaign headquarters, election night for Rahm Emanuel, the NATO Summit in 2012, and O’Hare. The co-founder of SkinnyPopPam Netzky, also chipped in $5,000.

The beefed up fundraising could be a response to Lincoln Park resident and former congressional aide Lucy Moog’s bid to challenge Smith in the upcoming Committeeman race. According to Crain’s, Lucy and her husband, Matt Moog, lived in the same, three-story D.C. flat as Mayor Emanuel and his wife.

Lucy Moog kick-started her campaign with $59,100 in reported donations, but a little under half that amount comes from $25,000 loan she made to herself on September 30th. Some of her notable donors include Gary Sumers, who retired as chief operating officer for the New York investment firm, Blackstone Group and his wife,Rachel Diane. As did James Sumers, an executive with United. Each maxed out their contribution at $5,400. Sidney N. Herman, a lawyer with the corporate law firm Bartlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott LLP, also donated the maximum.

Other Notable Contributions

  • Jay Michael, managing director of Flats Chicago, donated $5,400 to Susana A. Mendoza, he’s known for his sometimes controversial real estate development in Uptown and Edgewater.
  • Former 2nd Ward Aldermanic Candidate Alyx Pattison may have lost the runoff to Brian Hopkins, but she is still raising money. According to Pattison’s latest quarterly report, she owes $16,876.60 to political consulting firm, The Strategy Group.  Pattison reported three $5,000 donations in September from Mary Myers, a realtor based in California, and two individuals with Arizona addresses, George Myers and David J. Mowry.
  • While Ald. Milly Santiago (31) and 31st Ward Committeeman/Cook County Assessor Joe Berrios reported a significant amount of contributions in August, Santiago’s committee reported just $6,000 for September, and Berrios’ had a $2,000 transfer and a $2,000 donation to the 31st Ward Democratic Organization.
  • Chicago’s 27th Ward Republican Committee transferred $4,383 to 43rd Ward Republicans. Chris Cleveland, chair of the Chicago Republican Party, is running for Republican ward committeeman, and collecting petition signatures.